Gangtok (Sikkim): Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman interacted with the Chinese Army personnel at the Nathu-La border in Sikkim, on Saturday.
The light-hearted exchange saw Sitharaman greeting them saying 'Namaste', as the Chinese troops responded with the greeting, 'Ni Hao'.
Both parties discussed the meaning of their respective form of greetings.
Sitharaman quizzed the soldiers across the border about the meaning of her greeting. "Do you know what 'namaste' is," she asked.
The Chinese officer took a few seconds to guess the answer and said, "Nice to meet you".
The minister also complimented the officer on his English-language skills.
The Chinese head at the Nathu-La post also briefed her on the posts held by the army personnel present at the meet.
Sitharaman also took to Twitter and said, "Acknowledged a row of Chinese soldiers, from across the fence, who were taking pictures on my reaching Nathu La."
Sitharaman was on a visit to the Sikkim state to meet the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) officials at Nathu-La, where she interacted with the Vice Chief of Army Staff and other senior army official.
Chief of Eastern Command Lt. Gen. Abhay Krishna briefed her about the security preparedness at the Indo-China border in the Sikkim Sector.
On her arrival at the post, Sitharaman was accorded a Guard of Honour. She also offered sweets to the army personnel there.
She later met with Chief Minister Pawan Chamling at his residence to discuss issues in the state.